Ibru to FG: Subsidize education, health, not fuel
Entrepreneur guru and founder of Ikeja Hotel Plc, owner of Sheraton Hotel & Towers, Lagos, Mr Goodie Ibru has joined other Nigerians in calling on the Federal Government to remove subsidies on petroleum products and subsidize the places education and health on a larger scale.
He also emphasized entrepreneurial skills and knowledge, especially for college and university students, saying it would help many of them become job makers rather than job seekers, even when they are still in school.
Mr. Ibru gave the views during the presentation of the 2022 Distinguished Personality Lecture Series hosted by Lagos State University (LASU) Ojo on Thursday. He spoke on “Imperatives of a 21st Century Nigerian Economy: An Entrepreneur’s Perspective”.
According to him, the fuel subsidy controversy in the country has gone on for too long and instead of the government continuing to subsidize gasoline, it should subsidize education and health on a larger scale.
He said this would enable every Nigerian to be equipped to be more competitive in the market of opportunity, which would lead to real economic prosperity for the country.
Using a global perspective on fuel prices in various countries around the world, including some neighboring countries in West and Central Africa and comparing them with that of Nigeria which he says is very low to make his point, he said it was simply unsustainable for Nigeria. continue to subsidize the local price of fuel at the pump.
According to him, the government is spending several billion naira to support the oil and gas industry sector and unless this scenario is corrected to promote full liberalization of the sector, fuel smuggling will continue and the subsidy will also continue to drain the country’s public finances.
Ibru, who is the former President of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) and has also sought full privatization of the power sector including the Transmission Company of Nigeria to make the sector according to him more efficient like the telecom industry, said the government should have set conditions for the International Oil Companies (IOCs) while allocating oil blocks to them to build refineries in the country, as this would go a long way in reducing the cost of fuel in the country.
He said that as things stand, the government must certainly develop the political will necessary to ensure the successful removal of the subsidy and that the winning strategy is for the ruling party and the opposition parties as well as the other stakeholders are on the same wavelength. On the question.
He said that was how the federal government could prevent a serious national fiscal crisis that could occur if the status quo remains.
Speaking earlier, LASU Vice-Chancellor Prof. Ibiyemi Olatunji-Bello also highlighted the importance of entrepreneurship, especially in the 21st century economy, saying that entrepreneurs add great value to the national income, help to create jobs and new wealth.
She said that’s why LASU makes teaching entrepreneurship a core subject for every student, regardless of background.
She thanked the guest speaker for sharing with the students and other members of the university community her knowledge and wealth of experience, saying she hopes the knowledge gains will help them greatly.
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